Yesterday was Memorial Day, so I had the day off work...it seemed that an adventure was in order! I met up with a friend/coworker around 1:30 with the goal of an adventure; however, we had no particular plans, so decided to walk into Boston and just go wherever seemed interesting. This led to a free-form 8-mile walk through the Commons, Beacon Hill, the South End, Northeastern, Roxbury, Mission Hill, Harvard Medical School, Coolidge Corner, and Brookline. (I think that's close to the order we went through areas!) Then we took the T back to Cambridge. It was especially interesting because I know these little areas of Boston, but normally get there by T, so don't have much of a sense of how things are geographically related to one another. This walk felt like I was stitching together a variety of different areas in my mind.
We first walked from Cambridge to the Boston Commons, where they had a display of flags for the holiday, each representing one serviceman killed in war.
The day took on a strange, mythical tone because the entire city was filled with smoke -- apparently from several large forest fires up in Quebec. So everything was hazy and unusual (and smelled like a forest fire for the first number of hours). Can you see the buildings in that picture (taken from Roxbury Station looking back towards Boston proper)? They're much closer than they seem!
One of the highlights of the day was stumbling upon this minaret near Northeastern. See, from the upper stories of the lab, if you stand at the right angle, you can see a faint spire in the distance, visible between two buildings...it's been a mystery exactly what the tower was, a mystery that we hadn't been able to solve. But this minaret was at EXACTLY the right angle from the lab...we found our secret tower!
The Church of Our Lady of Perpetual Help on Mission Hill. Just beautiful.
After we crossed through the medical district, we started heading up Brookline Ave, intending to go to Brookline. And then, suddenly, there was a small stream and a green park and a path, and it looked absolutely nothing like Boston. So of course we had to walk along the river for as long as we could. (Interesting detail: this path ran parallel to the Green Line B train. We didn't see the train till we were almost out of the park, and then didn't know which it was. But when we took the B train back from Brookline later, we went right along the park!)
Did I mention that the weather today was pretty perfect? In the low 70's, a bit hot when passing by lots of concrete and glass, but saved by an amazing cool breeze. And in wooded areas, absolutely ideal.
We crossed a bridge over the river and came down in the middle of an outdoor sculpture installation.
All of these surprises...every corner we turned, more interesting things.
Oh yes, and here's me. A fairly simple outfit for the last day of Me-Made May, with the same old jean skirt and a pair of handmade earrings. I'll talk more about the end of Me-Made May later, though, as this has become quite a long entry already.
Shirt: H&M, thrifted
Skirt: refashioned from a pair of Joe's Jeans
Shoes: Naturalizers, thrifted (Can I just note my amazement that I walked 8 miles in these shoes and only have a little sore spot on one heel?)
A few other moments of note:
Tiny goslings in the park.
Walking from Coolidge Corner to Brookline, and actually finding the way pretty easily.
Dinner at a Chinese place in Brookline.
Continually stumbling upon new areas, and on areas that we knew.
The piano factory that used to be the second-largest building in the US.
This was a day to stop and smell the roses...around 4 1/2 hours of exploring the city, going wherever the urge took us. Really, a beautiful day. One of the best adventures I've had in a long time...and I'd say it definitely counts as an adventure by the percentage of time neither of us quite knew where we we were! I really love this city, which I hadn't anticipated when I moved to the area two years ago. But now...I'm so glad I'm here.
I'll end the giant post now...hope everyone had a nice Monday holiday, or a good start to the week!